One of the flagship features of Google Chrome is the ability it grants users to sign in with different profiles with their Google accounts. It allows users to sync their history, apps, bookmarks, and extensions across different PC’s. It’s a lot similar to the features that Mozilla Firefox offers.

Signing with different profiles also helps to improve the suggestions you get from Google, and automatically signs you into other services like Google+, Drive, and Gmail. The multiple profile support on Chrome helps to provide easy ways for multiple users to use the same browser and not worry about imposters signing into their Google profiles every now and then.

You could make use of different profiles Chrome to browse for other features such as entertainment, work, research, and make your profile stand out for critical activities, and online banking. You can use Chrome profiles simultaneously, this means you can easily open any profile at any time without thinking twice. In this guide, you will learn everything about how you can set up different profiles on Google Chrome, and how you can switch between them easily.

Getting Started

Google comes with built-in options for easy management. This means you can access options to edit, add, and remove any profile you don’t wish to use again. On Google, you can find this as the “People” tag. To create a new profile, you have to first open your Google Chrome settings and click on the “people” tag and then you can click on the “Add Person” bar.

The next step opens up a dialog box, which you can use to name the new profile and choose your desired icon for it. This will ask your permission to create a desktop shortcut short cut icon by default, which you can also ignore.

At this stage, you should note that if it’s the first time you are creating a new profile, the session you currently use will split to the Default profile, which you can also rename from the settings bar. Additionally, you can also enable supervised user controls, which can allow users to access certain websites, manage user settings, and review the history of browsing.

If you create an account that requires supervision, you access it from this link https://www.chrome.com/manage. You can also enable the “guest browsing” mode, which works in incognito features but offers more differences. In this mode, no cookie, or browsing history will stay back in the browser. In addition, users cannot modify the profile.

The First Account and How to Add a New User

There are two options when it comes to binding a browser window with an account.

  • Users can add a new user, which creates a separate account for users with separate preferences.
  • Users can sync any of their accounts to a synced one. This means some of the preferences of the user can remain stored on the cloud, where it can sync with other accounts.

When users use Chrome without actually connecting their accounts, they use an un-synced on, which is the normal one for most beginners. This new account will first connect to the chosen Google account. If you wish to create new account, a fresh one will be created without any bookmark details, or others from the previous one. On the other hand, when you create a new account, you have the option to choose the details you wish to sync with the previous account. In either cases, you can access the initial account at any time from the “first user” option in the menu.

Switching Between Profiles

To switch from one profile to another, simply click on the “switch person” icon located on the top right-hand corner of your browser. This opens the different profiles you create. Note that different accounts keep user information separate as well. While you browse you can also open links as other users. Here’s how:

  • The first way is to right click on any browser link and this will take you to the option to open it as another user. This will direct you to another window and take you to the link as the other user.
  • The Startup Parameters; This is similar to the use of desktop shortcuts. You have to load chrome with the parameter --profile-directory="Profile Name". At this stage, ensure that you replace the "Profile Name" with the folder name and use quotations in case the directory name (profile name) has spaces between characters). Sometimes this can prove to be a difficult option. An easier way is to use the option to “edit” from the settings page and click on the option to “add desktop shortcut”.

How to Configure Profiles

Each profile on chrome uses different locations for the storage of the profiles you create. Usually, the first profile you create is the default one and the others use different names such as profile 2 or profile x. You can find the profiles listed under the data directory for users in the chrome installation.

On windows you can access this through the C drive, go over to the users, click on the profile you want to configure and access the details manually. For example C:\Users\<user-name>\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\<profile name>. You should know that each user make use of their own set of data. This can include passwords, browsing history, web cache, settings, bookmarks, extensions, and more.

So, regardless of the browsing habits you have, the options to use different accounts, and switch users comes with many advantages, including the option to allow you to keep information separate. You can keep distinct profiles separately within your chrome installation. The best thing about this feature is that you can actually switch between multiple accounts alongside one. So if you feel like you want to make things more fun by accessing your other accounts, all you have to do is simply switch profiles and leave the boring ones running in the background as you browse on your Google Chrome browser.

References:

  1. https://support.google.com/chrome/answer/2364824
  2. http://www.pcworld.com/article/2089364/how-to-create-and-manage-multiple-user-profiles-in-chrome.html

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